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The Tradition of Grandma’s Presents

The Tradition of Grandma’s Presents

Essay finalist in the 2016 ‘Basket of Cheer’ Contest | Grade 10


When Christmastime comes around, the house goes up in joy for the coming of Grandma’s gifts.

As our grandmother has always lived far away, she would send a large box of presents, one for each grandchild. And, as there are ten of us, it came to be the most exciting part of Christmas, when a huge box came in the mail.

Her gifts have never ceased to fill us with happiness. With her presents, we have always had one little family tradition.

Grandma’s gifts were always different from all other gifts. They were never like the other ones. They were never things we wanted or things we needed; they were always something special and different from everything else. They would sometimes be one of the dolls Grandma has had for several years or something unique, like an angel made from a necktie!

She would always find a way to be creative about her gifts to us, something that we have always loved. She created a gift around the personality of the child it was going to, or she would find a toy that described exactly what the child enjoyed doing. No matter the gift, it was always something unexpected and creative.

Grandma’s gifts were never opened on Christmas Day. No, her gifts were too special to wait that long to be opened. Instead, her gifts would be opened on the night of Christmas Eve. During the chaotic moments of trying to get all ten kids ready for Midnight Mass, we would have a break and gather around the Christmas tree.

Once all were there, we would pass out the gifts to whom they were for and await the moment. Finally, on the count of three, wrapping paper filled the floors. The first gifts of Christmas had been opened!

After opening all the exciting new things, Grandma always calls to speak to each one of her grandchildren. It is always so thrilling to open a gift and then hear Grandma’s voice, asking if we liked our things.

Of course, we did–we always do! And so, as the rest of the kids get ready for family pictures, the phone is passed around, with Grandma on the other line, wishing us all a Merry Christmas! When finished, we are off to Midnight Mass at the Church two-hours away!

This tradition has always brought the family closer. We become much closer to our grandmother and much more loving of her unmistakable thoughtfulness. She holds a dear place in all our hearts and always will. She sets such a great inspiration in us that we are all captivated by her.

This little family tradition has been carried on for as long as I can remember, and I could not think of a better way to be inspired by my loving, wonderful family.

About Emily McKinnon

My name is Emily McKinnon, I'm an average Catholic homeschooling girl who has traveled all around the world. Being in a retired Air Force family, I was able to tour Europe, and half of the world. I have lived in many different places, such as, Germany, Texas, South Carolina, and many other places. I now live in Colorado, which I love dearly, but if anyone were ever to ask: I am a Texan at heart! I am the eighth of ten kids, and I love baking, writing, reading, crocheting, painting, and everything Disney related!

Seton High School

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